Selection of High Yielding and Farmers’ Preferred Genotypes of Bambara Nut (Vigna subterranea (L.) Verdc) in Malawi


Bambara nut (Vigna subterranea (L.) Verdc) is a nutritious legume, however, its production is characterised by use of landraces, which have been maintained by farmers. Lack of improved varieties has contributed to low yields. This re- search was done to identify potentially high yielding and farmers’ preferred genotypes for improved production of Bambara in Malawi. A completely Randomised Block Design experiment with eight genotypes (181CR, 181RD, 194, 137CR, 137RD, 317, 2762 and 2768) and four replicates was implemented at Chitedze, Chitala and Mbawa Research Sta- tions to identify high yielding genotypes. In addition to the yield, farmers’ criteria based on plant vigour, ability to fully bury its pods in the ground (mounding), yield at harvest, maturity period, seed colour, grain size, taste of boiled dry grain and taste of fresh pods were used to identify farmers’ preferred genotypes. Significant yield differences were identified between genotypes (P < 0.0001), sites (P < 0.001) and interaction between genotypes and sites (environment) (P < 0.001). Yield means across sites show that genotype 181CR yielded highly (1322 kg/ha) followed by 2768 (1066 kg/ha), 181RD (1064 kg/ha) and 2762 (841 kg/ha). In contrast to the high yielding genotypes, genotype 137RD gave the lowest yield (485 kg/ha) followed by 194 (573 kg/ha), 317 (617 kg/ha) and 137CR (620 kg/ha). Mbawa Research Sta- tion showed significantly high yields with site mean of 1177 kg/ha compared with Chitedze and Chitala with site means of 703 kg/ha and 530 kg/ha respectively. Farmers ranked the eight accessions in order of importance as follows: 181RD, 181CR, 2768, 137CR, 194, 137RD, 2762 and 317. Combination of yield and farmers’ preference identified three geno- types (181RD, 181CR and 2768) as potential varieties for production in Malawi. Accessions 181RD and 2768 were specifically selected for relish unlike 181CR, which has been selected for use as snack. However, further research on nutrition, value addition and marketing needs to be conducted on the identified genotypes.

Share and Cite:

L. Pungulani, D. Kadyampakeni, L. Nsapato and M. Kachapila, "Selection of High Yielding and Farmers’ Preferred Genotypes of Bambara Nut (Vigna subterranea (L.) Verdc) in Malawi," American Journal of Plant Sciences, Vol. 3 No. 12A, 2012, pp. 1802-1808. doi: 10.4236/ajps.2012.312A221.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


[1] A. E. Goli, “Bibliographical Review,” In: F. Begemann and J. N. Mushonga, Eds., Bambara Groundnut Vigna subterranea (L.) Verdc: Proceedings of the Workshop on Conservation and Improvement of Bambara Groundnut (Vigna Subterranea (L.) Verdc), International Plant Genetic Resources Institute, Harare, 1997, pp. 4-10.
[2] FAO, “Legumes in Human Nutrition,” Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Rome, 1982.
[3] S. I. Okonkwo and M. F. Opra, “The Analysis of Bambara Nut (Voandzeia subterranean (L.) Thouars) for Sustainability in Africa,” Research Journal of Applied Science, Vol. 5, No. 6, 2010, pp. 394-396. doi:10.3923/rjasci.2010.394.396
[4] S. Basu, J. Roberts, S. Azam-Ali and S. Mayes, “Bambara Groundnut,” In: C. Kole, Ed., Pulses, Sugar and Tuber Crops, Springer, Berlin, 2007, pp. 159-173. doi:10.1007/978-3-540-34516-9_10
[5] R. J. Hillocks, C. Bennett and O. M Mponda, “Bambara Nut: A Review of Utilisation, Market Potential and Crop Improvement,” African Crop Science Journal, Vol. 20, No. 1, 2012, pp. 1-16.
[6] J. O. Amarteifio, O. Tibe and R. M. Njogu, “The Mineral Composition of Bambara Groundnut (Vigna subterranea (L.) Verdc) Grown in Southern Africa,” African Journal of Biotechnology, Vol. 5, No. 23, 2006, pp. 2408-2411.
[7] National Research Council, “Lost Crops of Africa: Vegetables,” National Academies Press, Washington DC, Vol. 2, 1996.
[8] Bioversity International, “Plant Genetic Resources Accession Level Data Provided by: International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA),” 2011.
[9] A. E. Goli, F. Begemann and N. Q. Ng, “Characterisation and Evaluation of IITA’s Bambara Groundnut Collection,” In: F. Begemann and J. N. Mushonga, Eds., Bambara Groundnut Vigna subterranea (L.) Verdc: Proceedings of the Workshop on Conservation and Improvement of Bambara Groundnut (Vigna subterranea (L.) Verdc.), International Plant Genetic Resources Institute, Harare, 1997, pp. 101-118.
[10] F. Massawe, S. Mwale, S. Azam-Ali and J. Roberts, “Breeding in Bambara Groundnut (Vigna subterranea (L.) Verdc): Strategic Considerations,” African Journal of Biotechnology, Vol. 4, No. 6, 2005, pp. 463-471.
[11] Government of Malawi, “Guide to Agricultural Production and Natural Resources Management,” Extension Aids Branch, Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, Lilongwe, 2000.
[12] C. Mkandawire, “A Monograph Of Bambara Groundnut (Vigna subterranea (L.) Verdc.); An Underutilized Crop in Malawi,” 3rd Bunda College Research Dissemination Conference, University of Malawi, Bunda College of Agriculture, Lilongwe, 2006.
[13] E. Wale and A. Yalew, “Farmers’ Variety Attribute Preferences: Implications for Breeding Priority Setting and Agricultural Extension Policy in Ethiopia,” African Development Review, Vol. 19, No. 2, 2007, pp. 379-396. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8268.2007.00167.x
[14] K. Nkongolo, L. Chinthu, M. Malusi and Z. Vokhiwa, “Participatory Variety Selection and Characterization of Sorghum (Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench) Elite Accessions from Malawian Gene Pool using Farmer and Breeder Knowledge,” African Journal of Agricultural Research, Vol. 3, No. 4, 2008, pp. 273-283.
[15] L. Rusinamhodzi and R. Delve, “Participatory Variety Selection of Pulses under Different Soil and Pest Management Practices in Kadoma District, Zimbabwe,” In: A. Bationo, B. Waswa, J. M. Okeyo, F. Maina and K. J. Maguta, Eds., Innovations as Key to the Green Revolution in Africa,” Springer, Berlin, 2011, pp. 1015-1022. doi:10.1007/978-90-481-2543-2_103
[16] A. Saka, P. Rao and W. Sakala, “Evaluating Soil Physical and Chemical Characteristics for Describing Nutrient Leaching in Agricultural Soils,” Malawi Journal of Agricultural Sciences, Vol. 2, No. 1, 2003, pp. 8-20.
[17] C. Aremu, O. Ariyo and B. Adewale, “Assessment of Selection Techniques in Genotype x Environment Interaction in Cowpea (Vigna unguiculata (L.) Walp),” African Journal of Agricultural Research, Vol. 2, No. 8, 2007, pp. 352-355.
[18] R. J. Hijmans, S. E. Cameron, J. L. Parra, P.G. Jones and A. Jarvis, “Very High Resolution Interpolated Climate Surfaces for Global Land Areas,” International Journal of Climatology, Vol. 5, No. 15, 2005, pp. 1965-1978. doi:10.1002/joc.1276
[19] O. O. Adeigbe, B. D. Adewale and I. O. Fawole, “Genetic Variability, Stability and Relationship among Some Cowpea, Vigna unguiculata (L.) Walp Breeding Lines,” Journal of Plant Breeding and Crop Science, Vol. 3, No. 9, 2011, pp. 203-208.
[20] S. N. Azam-Ali, A. Sesay, S. K. Karikari, F. J. Massawe, J. Aguilar-Manjarrez, M. Bannayan and K. J. Hampson, “Assessing the Potential of An Underutilized Crop—A Case Study Using Bambara Groundnut,” Experimental Agriculture, Vol. 37, No. 4, 2001, pp. 433-472. doi:10.1017/S0014479701000412
[21] M. Sassi, “Short-Term Determinants of Malnutrition among Children in Malawi,” Food Security, Vol. 4, No. 4, 2012, pp. 1-14.
[22] S. H. Brough, S. N. Azam-Ali and A. J. Taylor, “The Potential of Bambara in Milk Production and Basic Functionality Systems,” Food Chemistry, Vol. 47, No. 3, 1993, pp. 277-283. doi:10.1016/0308-8146(93)90161-8
[23] I. S. Barimalaa and S. E. Anoghalu, “Effect of Processing on Certain Antinutrients of Bambara Groundnuts (Vigna subterranea) Cotyledons,” Journal of Science, Food and Agriculture, Vol. 73, No. 2, 1997, pp. 186-188. doi:10.1002/(SICI)1097-0010(199702)73:2<186::AID-JSFA643>3.0.CO;2-M
[24] H. B. Abu and S. S. J. Buah, “Characterization of Bambara Groundnut Landraces and Their Evaluation by Farmers in the Upper West Region of Ghana,” Journal of Developments in Sustainable Agriculture, Vol. 6, No. 1, 2011, pp. 64-74.
[25] B. Rivard and D. S. Reay, “Future Scenarios of Malawi’s Energy Mix and Implications for Forest Resources,” Carbon, Vol. 3, No. 4, 2012, pp. 369-381. doi:10.4155/cmt.12.35
[26] M. Ouédraogo, B. Zagre M’bi, B., S. T. J?rgensen and F. Liu, “Effect of Mounding Times on Yield of Bambara Groundnut (Vigna subterranea (L.) Verdc.) Landraces in Sahel-Burkina Faso,” African Journal of Agricultural Research, Vol. 7, No. 32, 2012, pp. 4505-4511. doi:10.5897/AJAR12.974

Copyright © 2024 by authors and Scientific Research Publishing Inc.

Creative Commons License

This work and the related PDF file are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.